Signs of the Times

From an address by 
Sir Arthur Lewis
on becoming Chancellor of the University of Guyana in
University, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey 

Every society has to learn to rise above its divisions, whether of class, race, religion, language or tribe. . . .

These are difficult times, and there is no easy passage through them. It is of some consolation to know that they will pass; that the issues which divide us so bitterly today will seem trivial to our children, or at least to our grandchildren. But we still have to live with them. It is of greater consolation to know that the way through is to multiply as rapidly as we can the number of people to whom they seem trivial today, and who will therefore use their influence to create here and now the classless and raceless society. This is one of the chief tasks of higher education. We put money into universities primarily for economic reasons, but if the universities really do their job what we get out of them is the even greater asset of a breed of people who have learnt to discriminate between what matters in human relations and what is passing triviality.

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January 25, 1969

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